The Jakarta Fashion & Food Festival (JFFF), held in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, could overwhelm even the most dedicated gastronomes.
The festival, held until May 26, offers a myriad of Indonesian dishes at the outdoor venue called Kampoeng Tempo Doeloe in Sentra Kelapa Gading.
Choices, choices. But perhaps our recommendations can make your task a bit easier:
Tahu Gunting Surabaya: A signature dish of Surabaya in East Java,tahu gunting(scissors-cut tofu) is unique not only for its flavor but also in its preparation. As its name suggests, the cook uses scissors instead of a knife to slice the dish’s ingredients, which includes tofu, boiled potatoes andlontong(rice cake).
This cutting process is usually quite impressive due to its fast pace.
This sweet-and-savory dish is topped off with boiled bean sprouts, spring onions, crackers and fried shallots.
Ask for spicy peanut sauce if you want a kick to it.
Price: Rp 15,000 (US$1.54)
Bihun Bebek Medan Suki:This popular dish from Medan, North Sumatra, is said to contain medicinal herbs.
Bihun bebek consists of clear, savory broth, delicate thin rice noodles and slices of duck meat.
Fresh lettuce, coriander leaves and spring onions are sprinkled atop the dish.
Price Rp 33,000
Mie Kangkung Oma Evie:Kangkung, often translated as water spinach, is quite prominent in many Asian dishes.
This time, it makes for a warm, comforting bowl of noodle soup. Mie Kangkung Oma Evie features blanched kangkungand egg noodle. It is served with shredded chicken, prawns and squid.
It is a nice combination of sweet and spicy with its rather thick broth.
Price: Rp 25,000
Rujak Kolam Medan:There are many versions of rujak (fruit salad) in Indonesia. This one originates from Medan, North Sumatra.
There are at least two things that make Rujak Kolam Medan a must-try dish.
First, a portion of it contains various fruit such as mango,bengkuang (jicama), papaya, pineapple, rose apple, cucumber and guava as well as Balinese orange and red-orange sweet potato. Vitamins galore!
Second, its sauce is a mix of fried peanut, palm sugar, terasi Medan (fermented shrimp paste), tamarind, pisang batu (small stony plantains with seeds discarded) and chili, which gives it a sensationally sweet, sour, spicy and crunchy taste when combined with fresh fruit.
If you opt for spicy sauce, make sure you have something to drink because it is likely that you're going to need it badly.
Starting price: Rp 22,000
Es Campur Sinar Garut: A swarm of people flock to this stand that sells this refreshing best-selling dessert, which is perfect on a hot day.
Es campur is basically shredded ice mixed with young coconut, avocado, cincau (grass jelly), sweet tape (fermented steamed cassava) and kolang-kaling (sugar palm fruit).
The dish is made even sweeter with bright red syrup and sweet condensed milk poured on top.